Ahead of today's Ubisoft Forward stream, CEO Yves Guillemot has released a public statement on the numerous allegations of misconduct and harassment within the company. Following both that and a recent controversy over imagery within a mobile game, Guillemot is both apologizing to victims and promising donations to various charitable funds.
In a four-minute video posted to Ubisoft's social media, Guillemot starts by acknowledging the numerous allegations brought against Ubisoft employees this past summer. As part of a larger reckoning within the games industry, employees were brought under investigation and several execs departed Ubisoft over allegations of misconduct and harassment.
"This summer, we learned that certain Ubisoft employees did not uphold our company's values, and that our system failed to protect the victims of their behavior," Guillemot says. "I am truly sorry to everyone who was hurt."
Previous reporting by sites like Bloomberg indicate parts of the company had been aware of reported misconduct well before this summer. The Ubisoft CEO goes on reiterate plans to institute change within the company, as well as promising to invest an additional $1 million over the next five years to focus on creating opportunities for underrepresented groups, including women and POC.
Guillemot also addresses the recent controversy over imagery in Tom Clancy's Elite Squad, which appropriated popular protest iconography. Ubisoft's CEO says the company "fully supports the Black Lives Matter movement," and will be making an additional donation to the NAACP Legal Defense Fund.
This message comes ahead of today's Ubisoft Forward stream, where the company is expected to showcase more about its lineup of games coming to both current and next-gen consoles. Ubisoft has also confirmed that this statement will not be a part of their livestream today, citing "timing constraints." It will be included in VOD versions of the show.
The Ubisoft Forward stream will go live on Ubisoft's streaming platforms at 12 p.m. PT / 3 p.m. ET.